CHAMPCAR/CART: Brands Hatch: Lola race report

Bourdais breaks through Rookie earns London Champ Car Trophy In only his fourth Champ Car race, French rookie Sebastien Bourdais broke through to win the London Champ Car Trophy in a fuel conservation contest at the historic 1.192-mile Brands ...

Bourdais breaks through
Rookie earns London Champ Car Trophy

In only his fourth Champ Car race, French rookie Sebastien Bourdais broke through to win the London Champ Car Trophy in a fuel conservation contest at the historic 1.192-mile Brands Hatch Indy circuit. The race was run with only two caution periods, one on the first lap for an irregular start; the second yellow was for Alex Yoong's spin on lap 79.

"This is very, very satisfying. We should have won the first two races and it's been a frustrating year to now," Bourdais said. "We have great balance with our Lola B02/00 and we understand it very well," he acknowledged.

Bourdais led Newman/Haas Racing teammate Bruno Junqueira (#1 PacifiCare Lola/Ford) to the checkered flags by 7.835 seconds as the Brazilian crept closer to Paul Tracy's point lead (65-54) when the Canadian suffered an engine failure. "This track is very, very good for our cars, but I burned too much fuel trying to catch Sebastien and Paul to win today. It's very difficult to pass here," he noted. "It's good to get these points as we head to Germany."

Third place in the 165-lap race went to Mario Dominguez in the #55 Herdez Competition Lola/Ford, achieving his second podium in his sophomore year. "This is a very satisfying result for our team. The track is like a go-kart circuit, so short and fast. It was a hard, demanding race and it was about saving fuel. I never had to drive a fuel-conservation race, so I learned something today," Dominguez said.

Oriol Servia picked up fourth place in the #20 Visteon Lola/Ford in an event that saw only three retirements: Yoong, Tracy and Jimmy Vasser, who left the contest at the start. Patrick Carpentier earned fifth place in the #32 Team Player's Lola/Ford, hampered by failing brakes near the end to challenge Servia. Michel Jourdain Jr. took sixth in his #9 Gigante Lola/Ford and retains third place in the standings with 42 points, calling it "a very long day out there as I had to focus on fuel mileage." Roberto Moreno brought the #4 Herdez Lola/Ford home in seventh, while Alex Tagliani's #33 Johnson Controls Lola/Ford completed an eight-car Lola freight train.

"It has been a fabulous weekend," noted Lola chairman Martin Birrane, "a terrific demonstration of the qualities of our Lola B02/00. To have the first eight cars home at Lola's home race is fantastic."

The Champ Cars reconvene at the 1.5-mile Eurospeedway Lausitz next Sunday for the German 500, race #5 in a 19-event campaign.

-lola cars-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Bruno Junqueira , Roberto Moreno , Patrick Carpentier , Alex Tagliani , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Alex Yoong , Mario Dominguez , Sébastien Bourdais , Martin Birrane , Michel Jourdain